As I’ve been reading a lot about how to save on car insurance, I wonder how much those savings will really be. Some simple ways to save money are raising your deductible, removing comprehensive coverage and decreasing your liability coverage limits. The other thing I’d caution you on when comparing prices with auto carriers is being sure the policy periods are the same. Some policies are quoted for the year and other policies may be quoted for 6 months as an example.
Raising your deductible sounds like a good idea, until you have been in an accident and you need the funds to get your car fixed or get it paid off. When you are at fault for an accident, or there is contested liability, having a higher deductible can create a financial hardship on you when you have to lay out that $500.00 or $1,000.00 deductible. Look at your cash flow to know if you can afford your deductible if you were involved in a motor vehicle collision. Otherwise, the little bit of savings by increasing your deductible may only cost you more later.
Comprehensive coverage is one of the insurance coverages many people do not think about with regard to their auto insurance policy. Comprehensive coverage is defined in your auto policy as damage to your vehicle not caused by a collision. So comprehensive covers things like cracks in your windshield from a rock ricocheting off the car in front of you, hail damage, flood damage or a stolen vehicle. As is pertinent here in North Carolina, if you hit a deer, the damage will typically be covered under the comprehensive coverage of your policy.
When people are in an economic crisis, I think insurance is one of the places they cut first. In North Carolina, you are required to carry liability limits of $30,000.00 per person / $60,000.00 per accident. Unfortunately if you are at fault for an accident, that may not be enough to compensate the injured party for damages. The injured individual could continue to try to collect from you personally. If the injured party wins, he/she can obtain a judgment against you. So carrying a higher liability limit can help protect your future.
There are other coverages available for your personal protection to be sure you are covered when other people do not carry adequate insurance coverage. Some of those coverages are medpay coverage and uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. For other valuable information on insurance coverage, click here.
I always recommend you talk with an attorney to understand automobile insurance coverages and then talk with your insurance agent. Ask your agent for discounts that may apply to you and your family. Be sure your insurance agent understands all these coverages. Some insurance agents do not think to discuss all aspect of every coverage with you in order to ensure you have the right policy for you and your family. I also recommend you read your policy when you obtain it; there are gems of information in there you probably did not even know.